By Jim Ellis — Friday, Aug. 25, 2023
PresidentIowa: Selzer & Company Releases Survey — The Hawkeye State’s proven most accurate pollster, Selzer & Company, released a pre-debate poll in partnership with NBC News and the Des Moines Register newspaper. This research study provides some needed good news for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis as his 66 percent positive rating is the best of any presidential candidate, although only one percentage point better than former President Donald Trump.
Trump still leads the first choice ballot test, however, with 42-19-9-6-6 percent split over Gov. DeSantis, Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), former Vice President Mike Pence, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, and ex-UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, respectively. He tops Gov. DeSantis by only two points when first, second, and “considering” categories are added and assigned an aggregate point value. The Iowa Republican Caucus is scheduled for Jan. 15, 2024.
New Hampshire: DeSantis Drops to Fourth — The Granite State Echelon Insights data (8/15-17; 800 NH likely Republican primary voters; live interview & text) sees former President Donald Trump leading the pack of candidates with a rather low support factor of 34 percent. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was second with 14 percent, and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy follows in third position at 11 percent support. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis posts a disappointing nine percent.
It is likely the New Hampshire primary will be scheduled for Jan. 23, eight days after the Iowa Caucus and 11 days before the South Carolina Democratic primary. The South Carolina Republicans will vote on Feb. 24, followed by the Michigan primary three days later. Super Tuesday is scheduled for March 5, 2024.
Nevada: Brown Leads in First Primary Poll — Public Opinion Strategies, polling for the Duty First Super PAC, an organization supporting candidate Sam Brown (R), released the result of their first Nevada Senate Republican primary survey (Public Opinion Strategies; Aug. 15-17; 500 likely Nevada Republican primary voters; live interview). The results find Brown, an Afghan War veteran, leading former state assemblyman and frequent candidate Jim Marchant, 33-15 percent, with five other announced candidates failing to reach even the three percent support plateau.
Brown, the 2022 US Senate candidate who raised over $4 million for his unsuccessful primary effort against former Attorney General Adam Laxalt and now has National Senate Republican Committee chairman Steve Daines’ endorsement, also leads in all segmentation divisions. Most importantly, of the respondents who are familiar with both Brown and Marchant, the former leads the latter by a strong 59-21 percent cut. The Nevada primary is scheduled for June 11, 2024. The eventual Republican nominee will challenge first-term Sen. Jacky Rosen (D) in what promises to be a hotly contested general election campaign.
AZ-3: Laura Pastor (D) Withdraws — Phoenix City Councilwoman Laura Pastor (D), whose late father, Ed Pastor (D), represented Phoenix in the US House for 12 terms, announced that she is withdrawing from the open seat race to replace present incumbent Ruben Gallego (D-Phoenix). Ms. Pastor says her withdrawal is due to a non-life threatening health issue, but one serious enough to force her from the campaign trail.
With Congressman Gallego running for Senate, the Democratic primary will determine the 3rd District’s next Representative. At this point, four Democrats have announced for the seat including Phoenix City Councilwoman Yassamin Ansari and former state Senate Minority Leader Raquel Teran. The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates AZ-3, which is wholly contained within Maricopa County, as D+44. The Arizona primary is late, scheduled for August 6, 2024, so much can happen to change the race between now and the April 8, 2024, candidate filing deadline.
GA-13: Rep. David Scott Draws Dem Primary Challenger — Veteran Georgia US Rep. David Scott (D-Atlanta) surprised many by recently announcing he would run for a 12th term. Now, he has drawn a Democratic primary challenger. East Point Utility Board chairman Mark Herring did not attack Rep. Scott in his announcement address, only saying he is running to make a “positive difference.” Others are expected to join, thus creating a multi-candidate Democratic primary.
GA-13 is another district where winning the Democratic nomination is tantamount to election. The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates the seat as D+52. Rep. Scott faced three Democrats in the 2022 congressional primary, winning with 66 percent of the vote. In 2020, however, the outcome was much tighter as he avoided a runoff with just 52.9 percent, again opposite three opponents.